William Eichler 24 August 2018

Nearly half of English councils using unsupported server software

Nearly half of English councils using unsupported server software image

Nearly half of councils in England are still using unsupported server software, according to new research.

A freedom of information request, conducted by COMPAREX UK, has highlighted a number of security vulnerabilities in many English councils, as 46% are still using one or more of Windows Server 2000, Windows Server 2003, or Microsoft SQL Server 2005. These products are now out of extended support so no longer receive regular security patches.

The research also found 94% of councils are currently running Windows Server 2008 and Windows SQL Server 2008, both of which are out of mainstream support. Only around one in ten councils are paying for extended support to receive security updates for these products.

'By continuing to run out-of-date server software, many councils are exposing themselves to a host of security and compliance risks,' said Chris Bartlett, business unit director – public sector at COMPAREX UK.

He added: 'The FOI data presents a worrying picture. Only a handful of councils are currently paying for extended support, but it appears most are either unaware or are simply ignoring the risks of using unsupported software. Councils need more detailed insight and greater visibility into their software estates, so they can make better informed upgrade decisions.'

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